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POLICE: Stepfather allegedly shot teen, then smoked a cigarette

Prosecutors charged 64-year-old William Richard Jones for the murder of 14-year-old Trevor Reynolds

July 06, 2012|Mary Moloney, KSPR News |

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- In the historic hallways of Central High School, 14-year-old Trevor Reynolds was easy to spot. The freshman stood well over 6 feet tall and would usually travel among a big group of students. Those who knew Reynolds said his personality and kindness rivaled his height.

"He was an easy going kid. Just that gentle giant type. He was a big kid and very sweet," explained Carol Davis, freshman counselor at Central High School.

The teenager would come into Davis's office to talk about schedule changes. They would speak together about his potential to play football.

"The thing that sticks up in my mind about Trevor is that he was always so respectful and polite. It was 'yes ma'am.' Every time we spoke it was like, 'yes Ma'am!'" Davis laughed.

Reynolds had a southern drawl and a southern charm. The teen spent many years in Alabama and loved Bama sports, wearing shirts that either had Alabama or Auburn insignia on it.

"Trevor was a very personable kid, a big kid for his age. Very popular with other students," said Lynette Butler, Central's nurse. "Easy to get along with, had a southern charm about him, called me 'Miss Nurse' and everything was 'yes Ma'am' and 'no ma'am.' He was just easy to talk to and to listen to."

The teenager's life was cut short by a single gunshot wound. According to court documents, Trevor and his stepfather, 64-year-old William Richard Jones, would fight over one of the boy's friends. In the 24 hours before the shooting, Springfield Police were called to the home in Northeast Springfield twice. Each time, witnesses state Trevor was taken out of the house by his mother to "diffuse the situation."

On July 5, the teen's mother said he returned home and apologized to Jones and went to sleep. While Reynolds was sleeping, police believe Jones walked into the doorway of the teen's room and pulled the trigger of a gun. Trevor Reynolds was shot once in the chest.

His mother reported to police that she heard a shot that sounded like a "firework." She said she saw Jones with blood on one of his hands, holding a smoking gun. The woman said after the shooting, Jones put the gun down, sat in a chair, and smoked a cigarette.

"Just sick, you know, sick in the pit of my stomach," said Butler shaking her head. "I didn't want to believe it."

"Oh, it just took me by surprise that something would happen to such a vital spirit like Trevor," Davis agreed.

Trevor Reynolds's facebook page became a memorial for the teen, where students posted pictures, poems, and messages. Some referenced the Central High School yearbook and said they would forever remember Trevor's big smile, not his murder.

"I think he'll be remembered for that. For being a nice guy. And that's how I'll remember him," Butler said firmly.

William Jones is charged with first degree murder. He is held on a $250,000. Jones has to appear in court before bond is granted.

Counselors will be available throughout the summer for students who need them. Contact Central High School for information.

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